Lessons learned

Over the course of this semester, Sister Donna Jean has been a constant symbol of hope. She has taught me many valuable lessons I could have never received anywhere else. From learning about her travels to Egypt to her willingness to spend all of her childhood days taking care of others -- she has taught me that no matter what, you should always be grateful for what you have.

As I met with her and our relationship developed, I began to confide in her about much of my own past. Whether it was about my family history or my medical difficulties, she listened closely. She would frequently help me solve a problem or give wise advice that would open my eyes to something I had not seen. Her ability to put things into perspective was absolutely amazing.

I would often ask her about the experiences of her own life and attempt to see if there was more that we had in common. Often we did. She explained to me her inability to ever say no to an opportunity. She would consistently get asked to help friends or family with various tasks and she always accepted without hesitation. She was always willing to take on challenges no matter how big or small as long as it helped somebody out. 

I feel as though she and I relate on so many levels with both our personalities and our unwillingness to ever say no. It felt as though every week she was bringing up another lesson I could learn as we talked over things such as the weather and the current education system. No matter what, I knew she would always have wise words to share with me if I needed them.

She is someone who is reliable and dependent not only with her advice but with her friendship.

About Victoria Flowers

Victoria Flowers is a sophomore at Aquinas College. She is pursuing a major in English and a double minor in communication and women’s studies. She loves to explore different coffee shops and watch all different types of movies. She is extremely close with her mom and younger brother. She spends most of her time working at a local movie theater and spending time with her coworkers. By participating in the Sister Story project, she is hoping to learn many things that will help her in her future career. In addition to that, she is looking forward to helping preserve the stories of many women within the Catholic Church. During the Spring of 2019 she was paired with Sister Donna Jean Thelen, OP; a Grand Rapids Dominican Sister.